Bank gamble pays off for Odey's flagship hedge fund

The City financier Crispin Odey recorded a 24 per cent return in his flagship hedge fund last year, powered by daring investments in companies such as Barclays and BSkyB.

The Odey European fund saw its assets grow to $1.8bn (£1.1bn) during the first 10 months of the year, according to new data, making it the second-best-performing hedge fund in Europe and the fifth best in the world.

The strong performance contrasts sharply with the 20.3 per cent drop the fund recorded in 2011 when a number of Mr Odey's investments backfired. These included Barclays, whose shares fell 33 per cent in 2011 but rose 49 per cent last year despite being embroiled in the Libor-rigging scandal and suffering the loss of its chief executive Bob Diamond.

Other investments to serve the fund well in 2012 included the retailer Sports Direct, where Mr Odey backed a multi-million pound bonus for the company's founder, Mike Ashley, labelling him a "genius".

Mr Odey and his wife, Nichola Pease, are worth £455m, according to the last Sunday Times Rich List. He took home £9.4m in pay last year, 6 per cent lower than a year earlier following his fund's poor performance in 2011.

The 53-year-old, who hit the headlines last year when he submitted plans for a £120,000 chicken house in the grounds of his Grade II-listed country estate in the Forest of Dean, will be hoping for a repeat of 2012's performance this year.

In October, he increased his holding in troubled rival Man Group to 5 per cent, recently describing the company as "an amazing selling machine".

He has also turned his attentions to the Coalition Government.

"David Cameron is not a leader," he said in an interview. "He doesn't understand power and he doesn't use it." He added: "George [Osborne], we [the City] hate more than Dave."

Overall, Odey Asset Management, the Odey European fund's parent company, controls about $5bn worth of assets.

The new figures from Bloomberg named the United States-based Metacapital Management as the world's best-performing hedge fund after it grew 38 per cent by betting on mortgages.

In Europe, Michael Hintze's London-based CQS fund was the best performer, returning 28.9 per cent last year, having fallen by 10.4 per cent in 2011.

peoplePaper attempts to defend itself
voicesWe desperately need men to be feminists too
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

IT Project manager - Web E-commerce

£65000 Per Annum Benefits + bonus: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: If you are...

Trainee / Experienced Recruitment Consultants

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250 ...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Soho

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40000: SThree: As a Recruitment Consultant, y...

Trainee Recruitment Consultants - Banking & Finance

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits